Published by Suminokura Soan. "Sagabon versions of Ise Monogatari (Tales of Ise), which were published in ten separate editions, allowed this tenth-century collection of poem tales to assume its place as one of the best-known Japanese classics. The book consists of 125 brief chapters, each usually centering on a poem or two, recounting courtier and various companions. At first glance it may be hard to tell that these volumes were printed with movable wooden type. The connected characters appear to be written with a brush, but close examination reveals that no more than two or three kana characters are connected. The anonymous woodblock-printed illustrations of these Ise editions are derived from hand-drawn manuscripts with limited circulation." - abridged from description by John T Carpenter.
Mino ware, Green Oribe type. This covered dish is a product of the Mino multi-chambered or "climbing" kilns, which produced Oribe ceramics characterized by an iridescent green copper glaze and underglaze iron drawing.
Pottery piece dating from circa 5000 BCE. Often referred to as a "flame" vessel due to the elaborate ornamentation on the lip.
A top-ranking Japanese actress of the 1920s.
This jinbaori, made of wool, is said to have been owned by Date Masamune, daimyo of Sendai. The jinbaori's purpose was originally functional, being worn over armor for protection against cold and rain. Horizontally centered on the back of this jacket of thin wool is the bamboo and sparrow crest ("mon") of the Date family embroidered in gold.
Although the temple painting was created for religious worship, the full cheeks and small red lips of the subject suggest strongly feminine features.
Recipients of ashes of the war dead were hard pressed to find solace in the thought that their beloved had the honor of dying for the Emperor.
Mino ware, Nezumi Shino type.
Oyoroi (literally "great armor") was the loose-fitting defensive armor of mounted archers that was developed late in the Heian period. It is made chiefly of leather and iron bound together to form horizontal tiers.
An example of an embarkation card, which everyone entering Japan must fill out.
One of the earliest extant examples of formal secular portraiture. The sitter is traditionally identified as Minamoto Yoritomo (1147-1199), the first shogun of Japan. After the death of the retired emperor Go-Shirakawa in 1192, Yoritomo received from the court the coveted title of Seiitaishogun (Great General Who Quells the Barbarians).
Andy Bernard, St Olaf student, takes some time out from shopping to get his picture taken with a geisha.
A couple enjoys their morning coffee and donuts.
Although there is no consensus on which church is represented in this fan painting, most believe it to be the one on Shijobomon, due to its unusual three-story construction. This painting was among a series of sixty-one fans painted by Kano Shoshu, mounted in an album showing famous sites in and around Kyoto, of which only twenty-four paintings are thought to survive. - abridged from catalogue entry by Christine Guth.
According to Hosokawa family tradition, this set of armor was worn in a 1358 battle in Kyoto by Hosokawa Yoriari, the founder of the family. Much of the original assemblage hat protects the body has survived: the cuirass and its pendant kusazuri (protective skirt), including the entire waidate (right side guard), and the kyubi no ita, which is suspended from the left shoulder over the chest. The two expansive osode (large upper-arm guards) are replacements dating from the sixteenth century and the sendan no ita, which would have been suspended from the right shoulder over the chest, is missing. The hoshi kabuto (star helmet) is made of narrow trapezoidal iron plates fixed with rows of neatly assembled rivets. The right-hand flap of the shikoro has lost several of its lacquered lames, a reminder of a sword blow during a fierce battle. - abridged from Shimizu, "Japan: The Shaping of Daimyo Culture".
Pu Yi, last of the Chinese emperors, was installed on a puppet throne in Manchuria (renamed Manchukuo) in an attempt by the Japanese to convince the world that Manchuria was independent and that an agreement between the two countries was in effect.
A building at Eikan-Do shrine in Kyoto stands against a cloudy sky.
On a man-made island in the middle of a small river sits several statues and pillars in honor of the river god.
A display at a candy store.
Uba, the mask of an old woman, is used primarily in Takasage, a play in which an old woman and her husband represent the spirits of two pine trees. On his way to the capital, Tomonari, a Shinto priest from he shrine of Aso in Kyushu, rests beneath the pines along the shore at Takasago in Harima Province. The old couple appear and sweep beneath the pines. They tell the priest of two aged pines, one here in Takasago and the other at Sumiyoshi in Settsu Province and of their auspicious associations. Tomonari goes to Sumiyoshi in the second half of the play, and a deity appears and performs a god dance. The Uba mask came to be also used for the roles of ordinary old women in other Noh plays. Typically, the eyes are carved as they are for the mask of a blind person. - Matshushima Ken
Bamboo flute with a mouth hole and seven finger holes. The nokan is the only wind instrument among the instruments used in Noh,and functions as a rhythm instrument.
Old man mask worn during Noh performance.
A floor-plan for a typical tea-house.
The ambiance in the maple composition is elegantly theatrical with its profusion of colors and diversity of flora, but with the distinctive admixture and reflection evoked by autumn. The flowers below, fragrant olive, cockscomb, bush clover, and chrysanthemum, complement the coloristic array of high autumn created by the individual maple leaves, some still green, some already a rich crimson, and some a desiccated yellow. The screen, with its massive trunk (85 cm across) and gnarled branches, set against a shimmering background of gold, clearly reveals Eitoku's influence in its preoccupation with dramatic visual impact and assertive brushwork. See also the right half.